Every professional email seems to have a signature. What exactly is an email signature?
When I send new emails or reply to the emails that I receive from the others, the following signature is embedded at the end of every outgoing message:
As you can see, there are no images. These are simple lines with mostly rich text or HTML formatting. This makes the signature appear uniform in almost all email clients.
Since most of the messages that I get are from businesses or professional people, I often pay close attention to their email signatures, especially when the signatures are quite comprehensive, and they appear to be larger than the actual message.
What is the significance of your email signature?
Although, my email signature is quite simple, it does not have to be that way. An email signature is not just about mentioning the name of your company or alternative contact details.
An email signature can also be used to convey your branding message and extra information that cannot be a part of the main body text.
It acts like your business card. It helps you create a cohesive message around your business.
You can also give it a personal touch by adding your photograph or your logo, although, do not overdo that, as I have seen in many cases.
Some businesses also use it to mention their corporate policy regarding use of information, contact details and other confidentiality-related matters.
I remember when going “paperless” was a prominent fad, almost every email used to have a message that they are going paperless and they mostly communicate with emails, in the signature.
Many businesses use an email signature for email marketing.
It is often suggested that you should not aggressively promote your products and services when you are sending conversational messages to your customers and clients.
Suppose, you have found an interesting and useful piece of information and you would like to share it with your customers and clients. This piece of information may not have anything to do with your product or service, but you know that it can immensely benefit the people in your mailing list.
In such messages, your email signature can do the business talking. If it contains all your services and your branding message, they also get conveyed along with the information that you are sending, without sounding salesy.
How should you create your email signature?
There is no set formula.
Many years ago, for few months, I used WiseStamp. It creates quite professional email signatures that you can embed with the help of a browser add-on but it also embeds its own logo, which can be removed if you upgrade to a premium version.
If you use Outlook, MS Word has a nice template carrying different signatures that you can simply copy/paste into the Outlook Windows client.
My personal advice would be, do not use email signature generators. They may not look good in all email clients and apps.
Instead, create a simple text-based email signature with the important information within 3-4 lines.
There is no need to include everything under the sun in your email signature. You can include your social media links, a small branding message, link to your website, and the main products or services that you provide.